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Barbering and Infection Control



Sterilization, sanitation, and disinfection are some of the best ways to mitigate the risks, and are vital to every successful barber.

The importance of barbers hand-washing

Upholding a good working environment plays a vital role for the control of infections in the barber shop. 
Here are some precautions to walk you through such cases when they arise in the barbers shop and to prevent transmission of contagious disease in the barber’s shops.

Is infection prevention and control important?

Yes, it is paramount that barbers prevent and control infection in the barbershop as it minimizes the risk of customers contracting an infection or disease which might arise as a result of improper or lack of cleaning, 

lack of sanitary observance and lack of sterilization of working tools.


Methods used for infection control

When it comes to the control of infection, rules and regulations are made as it relates to the state. 

The methods adopted are the sterilization and disinfection of working tools and both holds different regulations.

With this it is of great importance that we know the specific laws governing where barbering is located.

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muddy hands


This method of infection control involves the direct application of antimicrobial agents on working tools and this is aimed to remove disease causing microorganisms in the tools.

Sterilization –This process involves the direct removal or destruction of microorganism from working tools through steam application or heat.

hands with soap in front of pouring water facet

The primary germs which may be of concern are bacteria, fungi and viruses. 

The most important are:
  • Staphylococcus aureus and
  • Methicillin-resistant staphylococci aureus for short as (MRSA)
In addition, these germs cause skin infections which can be either severe or minor. 
These germs can be transmitted by contact which may arise from touches or tools used.

Blood borne pathogens: There are many germs that can be transmitted by blood and they include hepathetis B and HIV.

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Cleaning and sterilizing barbering tools and equipment

Cleanliness plays an important role as to confidence building and boast of patronage. Here are some ways to sterilize and clean barbing tools and equipment.
Tools to be used again should be cleaned and disinfected to make them safe for use over a long period of time and the procedures includes;
  • Debris and Dirt like hocked hairs on barbing tools is removed with clean cloths. However, this is dependent on the type of tools and appropriates cleaning method should be applied.
  • In the second phase, the tools used for barbing should be covered with approved disinfectant and allowed to dry up  for the next use.
  • Items used up at once should be disposed. 
  • examples of the items includes, cotton balls, buffers and nail files, wooden applicators etc.
In order not to spread bacteria there should be a complete understanding of the proper ways to apply waxes on hairs, creams, lotions and oils as they apply to salons.

Store items away from contamination – should in case Items like towels, combs, brushes, linens, are not being used, they should be stored in a closed enclosed container or areas to prevent them from being contaminated.

soap on hand

Prevention of transmission

 In addition, in order to maintain a safe workspace there should be a well spaced workstation to eradicate cases of droplets transmission during work and this should be about 3 feet apart.